On his way out the door, Governor Ed Rendell is defending the amount of no-bid contracts his administration handed out.
During Rendell’s time in office, he’s been on the receiving end of a steady stream of criticism for the amount of government contracts his administration has handed out without a competitive bidding process.
"None of them were sinister. They were all made based on a judgment. None of which were my judgment initially. Based on judgment of some manager, that it was necessary for the effectiveness and efficiency of the operation of the commonwealth. And if you look at the cost-savings that we’ve been able to achieve, it pretty much bears it out. Let me tell you that the bid system is overrated. "
Rendell said renewing contracts with firms who do good work for the state creates incentive for good performance.
"Nobody sued us and won. Nobody sued us and won. So we didn’t violate any rules and regulations. And nobody indicted us, which meant there was nothing nefarious going on. And believe me – there were people out there who would have loved to indict us."
A 2009 review conducted by Auditor General Jack Wagner criticized Rendell’s contracts, pointing out 382 million dollars worth of agreements with one private company, Deloitte Consulting, swelled to nearly 600 million dollars, after various non-competitive renewals and continuations.
Incoming Governor Tom Corbett has promised to change course, and open up bidding for administration contracts.